France in 1918 – somewhere on the front lines. The end of World War I has brought four German infantrymen together on the French front: a Bavarian, a student, a lieutenant and a man named Karl. The daily life of trench warfare, of gas, artillery and tank attacks comes crashing down on them. Even a leave home or the tender love of a French farm girl no longer provides a ray of hope in these times. In shockingly harsh and realistic shots, the cruelty of war becomes all too apparent through the examples of the shattered destinies of these four infantrymen.
Westfront 1918 was master director Georg Wilhelm Pabst’s first sound film. A German anti-war film from 1930, it was banned by the Film-Oberprüfstelle (Film Review Office) following the National Socialist assumption of power, just three years after its premiere. In 2014 the film was jointly restored by the Deutsche Kinemathek and the British Film Institute.